Leeds International Festival receives global recognition

Leeds International Festival (LIF) has made an impact on the global stage by scooping an award at the 2018 Downtown Achievement Awards in the USA.

As part of the 64th Annual Conference and Tradeshow held in Texas, Leeds Business Improvement District (LeedsBID) which solely funds LIF, was presented with the Downtown Achievement Award of Excellence for its work related to the festival.


Every year, IDA recognises outstanding improvements to city centres by the work of dedicated individuals around the globe through the Downtown Achievement Awards. Excellence awards recognise high achievement in the areas of innovation, representation and sustainability.


The Award of Excellence acknowledges an outstanding response to an industry challenge and exceeds the jury criteria. Leeds International Festival was among 22 qualified entries in the category of Events and Programming. This category features programs and events that improved the image and vitality of city centres.


LIF launched in 2017 to bring a new ambitious and exciting cultural festival to the city, with the inaugural event immediately making an impact, highlighting the international appeal of Leeds’ rich and vibrant portfolio.


In 2018 the festival grew further to deliver an unforgettable fortnight of more than 50 events, with 44 speakers over 15 days, which excited, entertained and inspired an overall audience of over 20,000.


LIF turns the city pink as part of its celebrations of local creativity and international culture while promoting the vitality and appeal of Leeds as a world-class destination.


Its eclectic programme combines the talents of international artists with Leeds-base creatives to present everything from live music to tech talks, catwalk shows and photo exhibitions, with world firsts and original pieces of commissioned work.


LeedsBID Chief Executive Andrew Cooper said:

“This award is fantastic international recognition for Leeds on a global stage and LeedsBID is highly delighted to have been instrumental in bringing the vision of Leeds International Festival to life and delivering this new showcase event for the city.”


“LeedsBID’s project received the IDA Award of Excellence for uniquely implementing best practice in urban place management,” said David Downey, IDA President and CEO. “Leeds International Festival 2018 is a shining example of excellent urban place management, delivering real value to the city and an exemplary response to a community challenge.”


Leeds International Festival return to the city in 2019, running from 2nd-12th May. Find out more at www.leedsinternationalfestival.com

International Downtown Awards winners photo